The Optimal Lifestyle
The billion dollar question
What’s the deal with weight loss? How can we sustainably lose weight and keep it off, all while feeling we aren’t restricting ourselves or getting “hangry”? This is a billion dollar industry in which companies create diet fads which cause people to lose weight short term. The problem is, these people will either get too hungry or can’t sustain their current caloric restriction, which results in weight gain. What if there was a way of eating, in which we could feel good, look good, and never have to be on a caloric deficit indefinitely?
Is caloric restriction the answer?
Losing weight by caloric restriction can work short term.
Theoretically, cutting 500 calories a day from your diet would result in overall weight loss. But, if you were to keep this up forever, would you just disappear? The answer, is no obviously, but what is the reason why? It’s a phenomenon known as metabolic adaptation, which in the case of losing weight results in the slowing of our metabolic rate. In other words, it takes fewer calories to exist as a thin person! Therefore, the more weight you lose, the fewer calories it takes for your body to burn just existing.
Every pound of weight loss may reduce our resting metabolic rate by 7 calories a day 1. While it takes fewer calories to exist with losing weight, another effect also occurs which is an increase in our appetite. Therefore, as you lose weight, your metabolic rate decreases while your appetite increases. This is the problem with all the diet fads, they keep you on the
same caloric restriction so you become starving and unable to keep going. This usually results in a binge of your favorite foods, and becomes a yo-yo diet effect. For every pound you lose, your appetite will rev-up about 45 calories3.
Is it your fault?
In general, high fat diets are associated with a number of health issues:
• Increased breast cancer risk
• Triple the risk of dying from prostate cancer
• Increased insulin resistance, resulting in diabetes and other metabolic irregularities
So, what’s the best lifestyle choice?
Finally, lets talk about the lifestyle that can reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and autoimmune disease.
This way of eating has numerous benefits:
- Increased energy
- Increased mental clarity
- Improved overall vitality
- Reduced weight
This is a whole food plant based diet!
Whole plant foods contain fiber, while animal based foods do not. Fiber is important for numerous reasons, but for relevance to this article, it keeps you full and satiated longer. As a result, you can eat more food that is less calorically dense, and not gain weight. This is the key to a sustainable weight loss approach. You don’t have to feel hungry, starve yourself, or over exercise in order to lose weight.
In numerous studies, people placed on a plant based diet were more likely to make persistent changes in their eating patterns
and were on average lighter years down the road than when they started 2.
Eating more calories can in fact result in more fat loss! This is because whole plant foods do not contain saturated fat, which is one of the leading drivers of weight gain. This lifestyle reduces cholesterol and toxin exposure as well.
While eating this diet, you are exposed to the many varieties of plants that exist on our beautiful planet. You are maximizing whole plant and unprocessed foods, by eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, herbs, and spices. It’s highly anti-inflammatory and results in decreased risk of diseases of dietary excess. These diseases are caused by excess consumption of calories, particularly animal fat and protein along with refined carbohydrates. Some of these conditions include high blood pressure, diabetes, atherosclerosis, and autoimmune diseases.
This diet allows you to decrease risk of suffering from these diseases and allows you to live the amazing, healthy life you deserve!
- Over exercising
- Diet fads
- Yo-yo dieting
- Beer AM, Ismar LE, Wessely DK, Pötschke T, Weidner B, Wiebelitz KR. Retrospective long-term comparison of naturopathic fasting therapy and weight reduction diet in overweight patients. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:453407. doi: 10.1155/2014/453407. Epub 2014 Jul 13. PMID: 25126098; PMCID: PMC4122067.
- Gard, Michael. Truth, belief and the cultural politics of obesity scholarship and public health policy. 2011 Mar; 21. doi: 10.1080/09581596.2010.529421
- Mohr B. Neuropathology communication from Dr. Mohr, privat docent in Würzburg. 1840. Obes Res. 1993 Jul;1(4):334-5. doi: 10.1002/j.1550-8528.1993.tb00630.x. PMID: 16350584.
If you would like to sustainably lose weight without feeling hungry, and enjoy the foods you eat, I would love to discuss this with you. I am passionate about helping people transition to a plant based diet, without feeling restricted, so that they can live their most optimal life.
Dr. Peacock specializes in plant based nutrition to help people live their most optimal, healthiest lifestyle. She works with clients on helping their transition into a plant based diet, fine tune nutrition to meet their specific needs, and with athletes on promoting optimal performance. She is a former competitive swimmer who has won a NCAA Championship, two US Open Gold Medals, and five international medals. She concluded her career as the 2016 US Olympic alternate in the 800 meter freestyle. Dr. Peacock is currently working at TrueNorth Health Center in Santa Rosa, California where she clinically supervises fasting for patients with a variety of health conditions.